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Echelon Wealth Partners’ Why Not Now? campaign has undertaken a unique challenge. The campaign is based on three years of research and discussions and encourages Canadian women to begin investing and to advocate for knowledge of, and participation in a stable financial future for themselves. This article provides a quick summary of the full white paper found here.
Money, It’s Still a Taboo Topic
It’s unfortunate that women do not feel more comfortable to talk about money, especially when women invest at only 40% of the rate of men. Add in the further gap of maternity leave and this country’s wage and gap, and it should be women talking the most about their financial situation.
The fact that 51% of women are more likely to lose sleep over financial concerns than men exacerbates the need for women in this country to break out of their silence and start having discussions about their investments, if not for their financial health, then for their physical and mental health.
Lastly, with 90% of women set to control their household finances at some point in their lives and over $750 billion is expected to transfer from Baby Boomers to their children in Canada, it’s clear that women need to start the conversation; Why Not Now?
Women’s Financial Advocacy
What does the research say is the most needed aspect of financial advocacy for women? Here are some of the most recent statistics that help shape this conversation:
- 84% of women are confident in household budgeting
- Only 52% express confidence in managing investments
- 56% of women play it safe by keeping their investments in cash or bank accounts
- Women score 15-22% less on financial tests over men
- Generationally, this is changing, with 41% of Millennial women wanting to be their household’s CFO compared to 25% for Generation X women
- 85% of women have said they ‘need to be educating themselves more’
Based on recent statistics it is obvious that there needs to be broader discussions and opportunities for women to learn about wealth management and investment opportunities in a safe and welcoming environment. Both financial literacy and risk tolerance, two areas that are common misperceptions, need to be addressed.
The Time is Now
Financial literacy, according to recent studies, in women compared to men is lower, but this is changing especially with younger women. It is the perfect opportunity for women to take advantage of learning experiences in wealth management, attending events that help expose common investing myths and providing learning experiences that cater to women’s needs. A supportive Investment Advisor and brokerage that provide these opportunities can make a big difference in your knowledge base.
While women continue to be underserved in the wealth management industry, there is a strong call for investment dealers to be more responsive to gender-based needs. Women see these needs as:
- Better service that focuses on their specific concerns and needs
- A clearly stated entry-level of investable assets
- Avoid the assumption that all women are risk-averse and focus on education first
- Focus advice on long-term goals as stated by the female client.
Echelon Wealth Partners has hosted a Summer Event Series around the Why Not Now? Campaign and will continue to look for opportunities to encourage women investors to develop and expand their financial literacy. Look for future events in the series or contact your Echelon Investment Advisor for an event near you.